Category: Tune Ups West Los Angeles

What is Routine Maintenance on a Car?

tune-ups-oil-change-los-angeles-90035One of the first provisions that a car owner should make is to read the car manual for the vehicle they own. This is critical. The vehicle manual will usually have a 30-60-90 schedule. This schedule is predicated on when certain items in the car need to be inspected, changed, or replaced at 30,000, 60,000, and 90,000 miles. While it is true that some parts of the vehicle, such as rubber gaskets, hoses, windshield wipers, and tires will wear out at irregular intervals, the 30-60-90 schedule is straightforward for the indicated items on your vehicle.

What is Included in Car Maintenance?

Not only is car maintenance the single most important way to lengthen the life of a car, but it can also save serious money on car repair. Car maintenance includes changing the oil, rotating the tires, checking the fluids, and more. Timing and serpentine belts are often overlooked by car owners, however, these belts need to be replaced periodically. Most mechanics agree that timing belts should be replaced every 60,000 miles or so. The owner’s manual will offer the manufacturers instructions for each component of the vehicle, taking the guesswork out of the equation.

How Do You Do Basic Maintenance on a Car?

The maintenance schedule section, located in the owner’s manual, has the basic intervals for critical engine components. Two of these components are the oil, and the oil filter. Oil is your engine’s lifeblood. When it comes time to change the oil, make sure you make an appropriate selection between synthetic and conventional oil, determined by your budget needs, and the needs of the vehicle. Next, make sure to check your tires monthly. Tires need to be properly inflated in order to perform well. Using a bicycle tire to inflate them is an excellent pro-tip.

How Do You Maintain a Car Engine?

In order for your car to perform at it’s best every time it hits the road, inspections are necessary. Through proper maintenance, future repair costs become limited and car performance is optimized. Regularly refreshing the oil in your vehicle, according to the parameters of the owner’s manual, will keep your engine in great shape. For car owners who tow a trailer or often drive in dusty conditions, your oil should be changed more frequently, and you should absolutely consider switching to the premium type of oil, synthetic. Other considerations include checking the PCV valve for proper operation and checking the spark plugs and the spark plug wires.

What Happens When a Car Hits 100k Miles?

After a car has passed one hundred thousand miles, it’s essential to routinely groom the car for any possible hiccups. Please read over the following list for essential maintenance tips:

  • Fluids. The oil, transmission fluid, coolant, power steering fluid, and brake fluid all should be completely replaced after the one-hundred-thousand-mile mark.
  • Belts. The serpentine belt in your car is made of a special type of rubber that is streamlined to work within a hot engine compartment. However, no one component is built to last forever. Ask your mechanic to look into signs of cracks, missing ribbing, marring, striping or general brittleness.
  • Water pump and timing belt. Other than the oil, the timing belt is possibly the most important item that needs to be replaced at the 100,000-mile mark. This is because the damage caused by a broken timing belt on engines can be extravagantly expensive.
  • Tires and brakes. Check your tire’s inflation level and tread depth. Any signs of uneven wear, cracking, and bulging should be addressed promptly.

Where to Get Car Maintenance

If you have noticed a slow engine crank or a low battery fluid level, it may be time to get a car battery replacement. For a car battery replacement and car maintenance, vehicle owners should find a reliable car mechanic or repair shop. Ask trusted friends where they get their vehicle serviced, and whether they would highly recommend those services. Another avenue for car owners is finding a local shop with excellent reviews. Because your vehicle is important, it will be critical to find a mechanic who has in-depth knowledge and respect for automobiles and will be able to translate that into good repairs.

Car Maintenance to Do Yourself

There are a number of things that car owners can do to improve the maintenance of their vehicle without going to the mechanic. One of the items that top the list is replacing the air filter. Car owners need a new air filter approximately once every year or twelve months. Air filters cost about ten dollars and don’t take a lot of time to install. Windshield wipers are another car maintenance item that can be replaced with relative ease. Windshield wiper blades should be replaced once every six months, and only cost about ten to twenty dollars. One of the reasons why windshield wipers are so important to manage is because old wipers can leave messy streaks on the windshield, which can lead to low visibility.

Car Maintenance vs Repair

There’s an appropriate and realistic difference between car maintenance and repair. With enough preventative car maintenance, car owners can expect a long car life with very few incidents or need for repairs. With enough knowledge and care, cars have been known to last well beyond the 100k mark. Car repairs are necessary when accidents happen and can be very expensive. It is important to note that excellent car maintenance can help relieve and even eliminate car repair, but that it is not entirely foolproof, as there are accidents that happen on the road.

Car Maintenance by Mileage

A routine car maintenance schedule is optimally based on engine mileage. While not all cars will need the same thing at the same time (see the owner’s manual), a good rule of thumb would be to follow certain parameters. Better safe than sorry, as the adage goes. Every 3,000 to 7,000 miles, the oil and oil filter should be replaced. Every 15,000 to 30,000 miles the air filter should be changed. For every 20,000 miles, the battery and coolant should be inspected. Every 30,000 miles, replace the power-steering fluid. As always, consult the owner’s manual of your vehicle to make sure that you’re on track for car maintenance success.

Do you have car maintenance on your agenda? Our friendly staff at Carotech Automotive and Tires are ready to take your phone call at (424) 283-4303. In Los Angeles, CA car maintenance is critical. Consult our experts to receive the best car advice.

What are the Signs of a Bad Transmission?

transmission repair los angeles 90035Some car problems are simple to diagnose. Whether you take your vehicle in Los Angeles, Ca or a Lombard, IL auto AC service, it’s easy to say “There’s no cool air coming out of the vents. Something’s wrong with the AC.” However, a failing transmission can have many potential symptoms, some of them fairly difficult to identify. If you aren’t careful, you could find yourself stuck out on the highway in dire need of transmission repair!

Today, we’re going to uncover some of the most frequent signs that your vehicle is having trouble with in transmission system. With these details you should be able to avoid an unpleasant situation on the roadway. Let’s get started!

What Does a Transmission Do?

The transmission manages your vehicle’s gear system, changing gears as needed while you accelerate or decelerate on the roadway. In automatic variants, the system activates gear changes without driver input, allowing for convenient shifting that preserves fuel economy by giving you just the right amount of power to travel at your given speed.

Why Do Transmissions Fail?

Unfortunately, transmission failure is a difficult challenge to avoid. What causes a transmission to go out? Some systems fail as a result of poor maintenance, such as a driver forgetting to replace transmission fluid in a timely manner. Low fluid or a clogged fluid filter can have disastrous consequences for your vehicle performance and safety.

Of course, long-term part wear may also produce significant hiccups in your transmissions performance. Have you ever heard the saying “Hurting people hurt people?” Well, damaged parts tend to damage other parts. If your transmission starts to display symptoms of malfunction (more on that later), you need to arrange service as soon as possible.

When to Repair Transmission

So how do you know when to drive down to your local mechanic and arrange repairs? As we’ve mentioned earlier, it’s prudent to arrange service as soon as you start noticing strange behavior from your transmission. This is especially true if you have a specialty vehicle that may demand extra time to source replacement parts.

What Happens When the Transmission Goes Out?

Okay! So we come now to the most important part of our discussion: the warning signs. What are the symptoms of a bad transmission?

  • A warning light and/or error code on your dashboard
  • Delayed movement when shifting out of park
  • The engine activates but doesn’t shift out of park
  • Whining noises or scraping noises during shifts
  • Signs of leaking red fluid (sometimes brown or dark red)

Many newer car models have advanced self-diagnostic abilities that offer more specific problems. When your vehicle generates an error code, it provides your mechanic with a quick summary of the problem under the hood.

Most likely however, you’ll feel the difference in driving performance if your transmission begins to degrade. Difficulty shifting, slipping gears, and whining noises quickly stand out as you zoom along the highway. While your system may not fail completely in one afternoon, it’s important that you arrange service as soon as you are able.

Transmission Repair or Replace?

This may be a difficult decision, especially as your vehicle grows older and more advanced in mileage. Replacement represents a significantly more expensive choice, but cyclical repair costs quickly add up over time too. If you’re vehicle is relatively new (less than 100,000 miles), swapping the transmission may seem like the obvious solution.

Before you jump at repairs or replacement, try researching your particular vehicle online. Some particular models routinely suffer from early transmission failure. If you are having a difficult time making a decision, take fifteen minutes to talk with your trusted auto repair mechanic and get their opinion. They’ll have inside insight into costing and expected part lifetime.

Transmission Repair vs Rebuild

There is a third option that some transmission repair shops may suggest, especially for luxury vehicles. For most problems, part repair offers a very affordable and lucrative way to resolve part wear. Damaged parts are simply replaced without too much fuss. However, replacing numerous parts in a completely worn down transmission is often way too expensive to be practical.

That’s where system rebuilds come in. The entire transmission system is shipped to the nearest manufacturing center (of your car’s brand) where each part is refurbished by that model’s specialist. This allows car owners to restore the entire system without replacing parts unnecessarily. Of course, this process does take significantly longer. It is usually cheaper than replacement however.

Need Professional Transmission Repair?

A faulty transmission system is a frustrating challenge to face on the roadway. Timely service could make all the difference, saving you from an emergency situation. At Carotech Automotive and Tires, our seasoned mechanics offer convenient, reliable, and cost-effective solutions for your vehicle. To arrange your professional transmission repair in Los Angeles, CA, call our team today at (424) 283-4303!

Car Maintenance: The Basics You Need To Know

brake-repair-west-los-angelesLast month, we discussed the the ins and outs of changing fluids for car maintenance. However, there are several other aspects of car maintenance that it is also important to remember. Today we will go over the car maintenance basics that you need to know if you want your car to last! If you need any help with vehicle maintenance services, you can always contact our professional team here at (424) 283-4303!

Scheduled Tune Ups

Just like we need regular checkups with the doctor to make sure we are healthy, your vehicle needs regular tuneups with a mechanic to make sure it is in good condition. Your owner’s manual will give you a good idea of how often you need to have your vehicle professionally taken care of.

Wiper Replacement
At the end of a hot summer, always remember to take a look at your wipers. Here in LA, rain isn’t very common, so it’s easy to forget that you even have windshield wipers, but they do become unusable with age and heat. By checking them at the end of summer every year, and replacing them when they become dry, cracked, or warped, you can make sure you’ll be prepared when it finally does rain!

Battery Checks
You should also check your vehicle’s battery at the end of summer. The heat can slowly corrode the battery, and the first cold snap could be the end of the line for it! Have it checked out before the first cold wind, just to make sure it won’t accidentally leave you stranded.

Tire Maintenance
Tire maintenance includes monitoring the tire pressure, as well as keeping an eye out for worn out tread. Proper tire pressure makes sure you are safe when driving, and that you aren’t putting too much wear and tear on your tires.

Headlight Checks
Last but not least, make sure your headlights are working properly. Check them every couple of months to make sure all of your headlights and brake lights work like they are supposed to. This can help you avoid accidents, as well as tickets!